Coriander Ricotta Tortellini in Saffron Broth

Coriander Ricotta Tortellini in Saffron Broth
Coriander Ricotta Tortellini in Saffron Broth

You may be familiar with the dish Tortellini in Brodo, which is the traditional way to enjoy tortellini that originated in Northern Italy. This Coriander Ricotta Tortellini in Saffron Broth is a delicious twist on the classic with coriander, ricotta and prosciutto filled homemade tortellini in a beautiful saffron-infused vegetable broth.

Bold flavors are exciting and, of course, delicious. But sometimes subtle, sophisticated flavors
that meld perfectly and play off one another can make for a special dish. This is one of those
delicate and refined dishes that is not very complicated to make. It is essentially a cheese-stuffed pasta soup that is a light but satisfying meal.

Homemade Tortellini

If you are wondering why you should spend the time making tortellini when you could just buy a bag of frozen tortellini from Trader Joe’s and call it a day…. well, it’s because it’s simply BETTER when it’s homemade!

What makes this dish special, in our opinion, are four key components, but starts with homemade pasta. The pasta itself, of course, has that heartiness and texture that, combined with the shape of the tortellini, makes this
soup a meal. The mouthfeel is extremely satisfying!

We filled the tortellini in this dish with coriander, ricotta, prosciutto and spinach. The coriander adds a pop of flavor to the filling that brings the whole dish together.

If you have the time and are willing to make your own ricotta from scratch (which is ridiculously easy, by the way), we recommend following the instructions below and infusing the milk for the ricotta with coriander. Doing so will enhance the flavor profile and will produce a subtle, fragrant, and delicious base to your tortellini filling that shines through without force. Trust us, this is a beautiful touch.

Adding ground coriander to plain ricotta is the easiest option and will still result in a delightful dish, but we encourage you to give homemade coriander-infused ricotta a try for an even better result!

Coriander Ricotta Tortellini in Saffron Broth
Coriander Ricotta Tortellini in Saffron Broth

Let’s talk about the Saffron-Infused Vegetable Broth!

The second component that makes this dish special is the broth. A good homemade vegetable stock is easy to make and really will make this dish something you will want again and again. I mean, the broth is over half of the dish, so making something really good is worth it. Why not make some homemade stock and freeze it to have? This is exactly what we do. We will be posting our homemade stock recipes in the near future if you desire to make it for this dish in the future.

The next special component is good saffron. This distinctive ingredient is extremely expensive,
but it is unique. But the bonus here is that a little goes such a long way, so it ultimately doesn’t
seem so expensive in the end. The key is to just use a pinch, but the color of your broth will be stunning. A good rule of thumb with saffron is that if the most prominent flavor in your dish is saffron, then you have used too much!

The flavor of saffron will be, and should be, in the background, but will bring a bitter-sweet, almost
indescribable aspect to the broth. And the aroma will make your mouth water.

Coriander Ricotta Tortellini in Saffron Broth
Coriander Ricotta Tortellini in Saffron Broth


We hope you enjoy this recipe for Homemade Ricotta Tortellini in Saffron Broth. If you give it a try, leave us a comment below or tag us on Instagram @cooking_with_wine!

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Coriander Ricotta Tortellini in Saffron Broth

5 from 2 votes
Course: SoupsCuisine: ItalianDifficulty: Easy


Prep time


Cooking time


Total time





A delicious twist on the classic Tortellini in Brodo with homemade coriander ricotta tortellini and a saffron-infused vegetable broth.


  • For the Homemade Coriander Ricotta
  • 1 quart 1 (1 L) whole milk

  • 1/2 tsp 1/2 kosher salt

  • 1 Tbsp 1 (5g) coriander seeds, whole

  • 1 Tbsp 1 (30g) lemon juice

  • 1 Tbsp 1 (30g) white wine vinegar

  • For the Pasta
  • 1 1 recipe Multipurpose Pasta Dough

  • For the Filling
  • 1 1 recipe Homemade Coriander Ricotta (or 5 oz store-bought ricotta mixed with ½ tsp ground coriander)

  • 2 oz 2 (56g) Spinach

  • 1 oz 1 (28g) Prosciutto, chopped finely

  • 1/4 cup 1/4 (16g) dried breadcrumbs

  • 1 1 egg yolk (18g)

  • 3/4 tsp 3/4 kosher salt

  • 1/4 tsp 1/4 black pepper

  • 2 tbsp 2 (11g) grated Parmesan

  • 2 tsp 2 lemon zest

  • For the Broth
  • 2 quarts 2 (2 L) Vegetable Stock

  • 1 Tbsp 1 (14g) white wine vinegar

  • 1 Tbsp 1 + 1 tsp (24g) kosher salt

  • 1 tsp 1 black pepper

  • Pinch saffron

  • Additional kosher salt and black pepper to taste

  • Chili oil and/or garlic oil to drizzle on top (optional)

  • Parmesan or Pecorino Romano cheese for serving (optional)


  • Make the Coriander Ricotta
  • First, gently crack your coriander seeds just a little. It is easiest to put them in a plastic bag and use the bottom of a pan, rolling pin, or mallet to just crack them, NOT to pulverize them into pieces or powder. Combine the milk, salt, and coriander in a large pot on the stove over medium heat. Stir often with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula, making sure to scrape the bottom so the milk doesn’t scald and brown. Have another large pot or large bowl ready and put the lemon juice and vinegar in that second container.
  • Once the milk boils, immediately remove from the heat and, using a fine mesh strainer, strain the milk into the container with the lemon juice and vinegar. Stir the mixture thoroughly and curds will form very quickly. Let sit for a few minutes, then pass through another fine mesh strainer to collect the curds. Let the mixture drain for just a few minutes and place into a large bowl and let cool.
  • Store in an airtight container in the fridge if not using right away. The ricotta can be made in advance and stored in the fridge for 7-10 days.
  • Make the Pasta Dough
  • Follow the instructions to make one recipe of pasta dough HERE. The pasta dough will need to rest in the fridge for 30 minutes before you roll it out into sheets for the ravioli. While your pasta dough is resting, prepare the filling. The dough can be made several hours and up to one day in advance, if needed.
  • Prepare the Filling
  • In a large pan, bring ¼ cup of water to a boil. Immediately add the spinach and stir using tongs to wilt the spinach. This should only take about 30 seconds. Remove the spinach to a tea towel or paper towels and ring out the moisture. Chop the spinach and add to the ricotta.
  • Take a small nonstick skillet and heat over high heat until very hot. Remove from the heat for 10 seconds, then add the chopped prosciutto to the dry pan, stirring constantly for another 10 seconds. Remove the prosciutto to a plate to cool off for a few minutes, then add to the ricotta. Add the remaining ingredients to the ricotta mixture and thoroughly combine. Set aside in the fridge until ready to use. The filling can be prepared up to 1 day in advance if needed.
  • Form the Pasta
  • Remove the pasta dough from the refrigerator and let it sit at room temperature for a few minutes. Next, unwrap and knead on a lightly floured surface for a few minutes by hand. Cut the dough into manageable pieces about the size of the palm of your hand. Press each piece on a flat surface with your hands to flatten it to about 1⁄4 inch (6 mm) thick (cover the pieces you aren’t rolling yet in plastic wrap).
  • Run each piece through a pasta roller starting with the widest setting. Fold the sheet in half and run through on the widest setting a total of three times. If it gets too wide you can fold the sides in to make it thinner. If it rips or tears, simply fold it over and start again.
  • Run it through the next lowest setting two more times, folding in between. Then run the sheet through once at the next lowest setting and continue until your desired thickness is achieved. We typically roll it to the 5th lowest setting for ravioli. Every roller is different, so you may need to try out a few thicknesses to find what you prefer.
  • Lay your pasta sheet on a flat surface lightly dusted with flour. To prevent the dough from drying out too much, we prefer to roll out one sheet at a time and make the tortellini from each sheet before rolling out another sheet.
  • Alternatively, you can roll the pasta dough out with a rolling pin, but be prepared to really put some muscle into it. You want to roll the sheet out until you can see the light through it when you hold it up.
  • To shape the tortellini, first cut the pasta sheet into 1 3/4 inch squares (approx 4.5 cm). Add about 1/4-1/2 tsp of the filling in the middle of each square.
  • Watch the video for a visual of the next shaping steps. Pick up one square and first fold it in half joining the opposite corners to form a triangle. Press the two sides together around the filling removing as much air as possible. Next, turn the triangle so that the top point is facing your body and pinch the side points together creating a pleat close to the filling. This will resemble a pirate hat or baby Yoda at this point. Next, wrap the two pleated sides around the tip of your pointer finger making a ring, then overlap the ends and firmly press them together to seal the loop. Place tortellini on a lightly flour-dusted baking sheet.
  • Continue until all tortellini have been shaped. These can be made in advance and frozen in a single layer on the baking sheet. Freeze uncovered for 30 minutes then transfer to an air-tight container.
  • Prepare the Broth
  • In a large enough pot to hold the broth, add the vegetable stock, vinegar, salt, and pepper and stir over low heat, then cover to keep warm. 5 minutes before you are ready to cook the tortellini, add the saffron and stir. Cover and turn heat up to medium low.
  • Finish the Dish
  • When ready to cook the pasta in the broth, taste the broth for final seasoning and add salt if needed. Bring the broth to a light boil, then add the pasta. Cook gently at a simmer or light boil for 5-7 minutes or until tortellini are tender. Spoon the broth and tortellini into bowls. Garnish with a little chili oil or garlic oil and/or Parmesan or Pecorino Romano cheese. Enjoy!


  • If cooking tortellini from frozen, add frozen tortellini straight to the broth from the freezer. Frozen tortellini will take an additional 1-2 minutes.

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